Tuesday, Sept. 20, 2016
TORONTO -- A date many had circled on their calendars for more than a year is here as the U.S. and Canada renew one of the great rivalries tonight in preliminary round play at the World Cup of Hockey 2016. The puck is slated to drop shortly after 8 p.m. ET at Air Canada Centre with coverage live on ESPN in the U.S.
The stakes are clear. The U.S. must win to have a chance of advancing to this weekend’s semifinals of the World Cup of Hockey.
A loss and the U.S. fate will be sealed regardless of how its final game in the preliminary round on Thursday vs. Czech Republic comes out. Team USA will have no chance of moving on.
Jonathan Quick will get the call in goal tonight and coach John Tortorella has also chosen to insert both Dustin Byfuglien and Kyle Palmieri into the lineup, two players who did not dress for Tuesday’s World Cup opener against Team Europe (a 3-0 loss).
The U.S. and Canada have met 13 previous times in World Cup/Canada Cup play. Canada has won nine times, the U.S. three and there has been one tie. All of that past history, however, is irrelevant.
A capacity crowd is expected and the energy and excitement around tonight’s game is evident in and around the city.
NOTES: Jack Johnson, Brandon Dubinsky and Cory Schneider will not dress for Team USA tonight … Today marks Day 17 in Team USA’s World Cup journey that began back on Sept. 4 in Columbus, Ohio.